Home Travel Stories Gas Logs 1964 MERCURY Park Lane Marauder 390-4 bbl MPG= 9.3 City/ 16.7 Hwy/ 10.8 Overall
1964 MERCURY Park Lane Marauder 390-4 bbl MPG= 9.3 City/ 16.7 Hwy/ 10.8 Overall PDF Print E-mail
Written by Double Dragon
Monday, 27 December 2010 14:00

1964 MERCURY Park Lane Marauder 390-4 bbl MPG= 9.3 City/ 16.7 Hwy/ 10.8 Overall


Writing and photography copyright D. S. Brown. Owner's manual pages are copyright Mercury/ Ford.

Metric= 6.4 L engine- 25.3 L/100km City, 14 L/100km Hwy


The 1964 Mercury Marauder is a fastback model available on several of the full size Mercury platforms: Monterey, Montclair and Park Lane.

The OOCC two door Park Lane Marauder was a ONE OWNER car for over 20 years until the first owner was no longer able to drive. The engine was rebuilt around 150,000 miles. Otherwise, the car has received no more than necessary maintenance. See the full history and photos of this car in the 20 YEARS PLUS section of this website in the CAR STORIES department.


Precise MPG figures for this car are elusive. Years ago when the Marauder was ticketed for speeding, an independent speedometer calibration company was hired to check the speedometer which they pronounced to be reading low. They performed an adjustment on the speedometer which seems to have pushed the readings too high.

64 marauder speedo check

Milepost markers show the odometer to be basically accurate, but speedometer and odometer readings are frequently not aligned. Cruising speeds may be slower than indicated. Fuel consumption at 60 versus 70 MPH is going to be much different, so the highway figures should be taken with a grain of salt.



The June, 1964 issue of CAR LIFE tested a plain Mercury Park Lane 390 which shares its drive train with the OOCC Marauder. The CAR LIFE test car was a four door instead of a two door, and it produces extra air drag with its strange looking reverse rear window named "The Breezeway". The Breezeway can be lowered a crack to circulate air through the car via the front vent windows. The system looks weird, but provides noiseless airflow. The Marauder has a much better looking and more aerodynamic fixed fastback rear window.

The CAR LIFE test car curb weight of 4,360 pounds swelled up to 4,660 pounds with testers and their equipment. The bias ply 8.00x14 tires were set at 24 PSI. With an automatic transmission, 3.00:1 axle ratio and the same 300 HP power plant as the OOCC Marauder, the CAR LIFE Park Lane ran 0-60 in 9.3 seconds with a top end of 116 MPH and test average of 12-15 MPG.

The frontal area of the CL Park Lane which has the same nose as the Marauder is 25.2 square feet. Weight and frontal area are the two big factors in MPG.

In the same issue of CAR LIFE the cover story was a 1964 Tempest GTO. It has a frontal area of 21.8 square feet, curb weight of 3,470 pounds, and test weight of 3,800 pounds. Weather and criteria used for calculations were likely similar. The full size Marauder pushes an additional 4 square feet through the air versus the intermediate GTO. The Marauder hauls an additional 860 pounds.

The GTO was rated at exactly the same 12-15 MPG despite less weight and frontal area and one cubic inch differential in engine size. Possibly the high performance camshaft or the 3.23 rear axle in the GTO ate up the margin.

A MOTOR TREND test done the previous year in October, 1963 tested an actual Marauder. The 1964 Marauder tested was built on the Montclair platform which normally came with a 250 HP version of the 390 with single exhaust and a 2 barrel carburetor.

The MT four door Marauder had the optional 266 HP version of the 2 barrel, still less than the Park Lane standard 300 HP engine. Test weight was 4,800 pounds, while the curb was 4,390 pounds- just 30 more than the CAR LIFE test car. The mild MT Marauder was much slower than the CL Park Lane with 0-60 taking 12.8 seconds, the quarter in 17.6 at 71.5 MPH and a top end of 107 MPH. The CL Marauder posted a steady HWY 16-18 MPG. Even heavy stop and go figures were still a respectable 11- 13 MPG City.

The 1964 Marauder came out during Mercury's 25th Anniversary, a fact that is celebrated with this logo embossed into the center of the steering wheel.

64 marauder 25th anniversary



The OOCC Marauder was driven daily on short trips in cold to mild weather averaging 10 degrees C (40 degrees F). The car was garaged for short periods in an unheated garage, but usually parked outside. The trunk was usually empty, with a 200 pound driver and the gas tank at or below one quarter for a total of 4,450 lbs. The Marauder was driven gently in short trip stop and go traffic conditions. Oil changes were performed frequently despite light use. The OOCC Marauder's standard diet was 10W30 Quaker state oil and Chevron unleaded gasoline.

Below is an excerpt from the original owner's manual. And we thought no one cared about gas mileage back in 1964!

64 marauder owners p 63

The Park Lane pictured below in the illustration has the Breezeway back window. The Marauders had a fastback instead.

64 marauder owners p 64

The OOCC Marauder retains original equipment 390 4 barrel and replacement original configuration dual exhaust. The car has new springs, alternator, radiator and battery. The radial tires mounted on the original rims were set to 35 PSI. The extra weight of the steel belted radial tires vs. bias plies is probably offset by the fact that the hubcaps were left off the car. The puny 195R70x14 tires have significantly smaller diameter than the original factory tires.

Read the Tires story in this GAS LOGS section for more detail on bias ply vs. radial tires and how this affects MPG.

This first section of gas logs below covers from 198,000 to 199,000 miles and reveal unsurprisingly low MPG of 9.3 for city short trips. The entries begin at summer's end with most of them occurring in fall with temperatures around 50 degrees F (10 C) and plenty of rain. The gasoline contained 10% ethanol. Most modern gasoline reduces the MPG potential due to the fact that ethanol lowers the total energy available in the gas.

Odometer Gallons  Octane Fill?        MPG (uncorrected)
198,400       2.8        87      X  
198,558       0 0                 X  
198,558       6.7        87      X

198,627       4.6       87      X  
198,715       6.5       87      X  
198,780       3.0       87      X  
198,828       2.0       87      X  
198,841       2.2       87      X  
198,868       0 0                X  
198,873      14.4      87      Full  tank     
199,008       7.6       87      X  
199,083       1.5       87      X  
199,087      13.8      87      Full tank   9.3 MPG

The second section of logs below lacks fill-ups, creating difficulty in pinpointing exact MPG figures. The Marauder used 66 gallons to maintain a quarter tank of gas for 616 miles which equals the identical 9.3 CITY MPG figure obtained from measuring fill to fill earlier. These entries were logged in early spring with temperatures averaging about 48 degrees F (9 C).

Odometer Gallons Octane Fill? MPG (uncorrected)
gas can       1.0      87      X 
199,206      2.7      87      X 
199,231      1.3      87      X 
199,242      2.7      87      X 
199,265      1.2      87      X 
199,276      4.8      87      X 
199,286      1.3      87      X 
199,295      1.3      87      X 
199,305      1.9      87      X 
199,315      1.3      87      X 
199,333      2.7      87      X 
199,374      2.7      87      X 
199,388      3.0      87      X 
199,431      1.2      87      X 
199,453      1.2      87      X 
199,459      1.3      87      X 
199,476      1.3      87      X 
199,481      2.7      87      X 
199,509      5.7      87      X 
199,563      5.7      87      X 
199,620      7.3      87      X 
199,668      4.4      87      X 
199,714      4.5      87      X 
199,799      1.9      87      X 
199,822      1.9      87      X

There is a gap in the logs of about 900 miles and a change to some decent sized tires. The new 225R70x14 tires have a diameter similar to the original issue 78 profile sidewall 8.00x14 tires.

The city mileage figures below cover 200,000 to 201,000 miles producing an overall 8.3 MPG CITY average. The first fill-up reads 9.3 MPG as usual, but subsequent fills suffer diminishing mileage all the way down to 6.7 MPG. A tune-up provoked a rebound to 10 MPG. The warmer weather of late spring early summer averaging 63 degrees F (17 C) didn't boost mileage much. 

Odometer Gallons Octane  Fill?       MPG (uncorrected)
200,749      1.3        87    X  
200,756      6.2        87    X  
200,803      1.3        87    X  
200,814      7.8        87    X  
200,843      6.2        87    X  
200,848      4.5        87    Full tank  
200,919      7.6        87    Full tank   9.3 MPG

200,951      0.0        -      X 
200,997      8.9        87    Full tank   8.7 MPG
201,034      5.3        87    Full tank   6.9 MPG
201,084      7.4        87    Full tank   6.7 MPG
201,203      3.9        87    X (tune-up)
201,257    13.3        87    Full tank   10.0 MPG


1964 MERCURY PARK LANE MARAUDER 390 4 BBL HWY MPG= 16.7 (4,200 miles)

The OOCC Marauder was taken on a hot summer road trip along Interstate highways. Slow city exploration and secondary roads like old Route 66 and Highway 61 account for many miles. Highway cruising at an indicated 70 to 80 MPH composed the majority of the miles. The car was lightly loaded with about 230 pounds aboard and a full tank most of the time pushing the weight up around 4,600 lbs. It's likely that the speedometer reads high putting actual cruising speed about 60 to 70 MPH.  Windows were rolled down most of the time. Radio and other electrical items were usually off. The trip was made on a new set of 225R70x 14 radials, similar in diameter to factory issue tires, but inflated to modern high pressure: 35 PSI.

The trip covered 4,671 miles and used 290.8 gallons of gas for 16 MPG HWY at an average indicated speed of 70 MPH. One factor that depressed the MPG was the Midwest's use of ethanol in gasoline which has lower energy content.

To obtain more accuracy, the first fill up gas entry that produced 10 MPG back at 201,257 miles was allocated back to city miles. Much of the first section of the trip was done in major city gridlock that extended for miles down the Interstate. Tracking only pure highway driving creates a revised total of 16.7 MPG HWY.

Neither this figure nor the city figure has been corrected for possible speedometer error. A rough guess places speedometer and odometer error at 10% exaggeration. This puts the actual stats probably around 15 MPG at 60 MPH which tallies with the highest figure CAR LIFE gave for their Park Lane test car.

Odometer Gallons  Octane    Fill?       MPG (uncorrected) 
201,495      15.0       87      Full tank   15.8 MPG
201,655      10.9       87      Full tank   14.6 MPG
201,854      12.9       87      Full tank   15.4 MPG
202,046      10.8       87      Full tank   17.7 MPG
202,140       6.3        88      Full tank   14.9 MPG
202,316      10.1       85      Full tank   17.4 MPG
202,542      14.2       85      Full tank   15.9 MPG
202,745      15.0       85      Full tank   13.5 MPG
203,022      13.9       85      Full tank   19.9 MPG
203,194       9.8        85      Full tank   17.5 MPG
203,452       4.1        89      X  
203,520      10.0       87      X  
203,714      10.0       89      X  
203,823      13.3      87       Full tank   16.8 MPG
204,062      14.5      87       Full tank   16.4 MPG
204,299      15.7      87       Full tank   15.0 MPG
204,518      14.0      87       Full tank   15.6 MPG
204,755       1.9       87      X  
204,782       1.9       87      X  
204,824      15.6        ?       Full tank   19.6 MPG
205,083      10.0      87      X  
205,199      13.1      87       Full tank   16.2 MPG
205,447      14.3      87       Full tank   17.3 MPG
205,566      10.8      87       Full tank   21.6 MPG
205,---          5.5      87      X

Looking at all driving done in the logs, the OOCC Marauder used 661 gallons of gas to drive 7,166 miles. Minus first fill of 2.8 gallons leaves an overall average MPG of 10.8 for all driving.


Last Updated ( Monday, 01 May 2017 10:03 )